Reclaiming Me: I am not the idiot my former boss thought I was

This is a Guest Post by Charlene Orsine. A co-worker of Charlene’s, sensing her unhappiness, recommended she apply to Fear Experiment℠ (FE) as being around such positivity is an amazing antidote to toxins. Like crappy bosses and soul-sucking jobs. She did, was accepted, and just had her big show a few days ago in front of a sold-out audience of 700, dancing her heart out, always with a smile, always with contagious happiness. I’ve loved  seeing her family members over the past three months comment on all the FE photos of her —

“My daughter looks happy! That makes me happy!”

“Very proud of my sister!”

“Glad you have found another new you to celebrate and new friends to share with.”

And I must say, it’s so refreshing to see someone EXCITED to be in Chicago, what with the mass exodus of people I’ve experienced in the past year’ish and a Facebook feed full of weather-crime-CTA-you name it gripers (it’s to the point where I’m unfollowing, or gasp!, unfriending the Negative Nellies. Yes, sometime this city ain’t roses and perhaps it’s not for you anymore, but enough with the put-downs). Charlene exudes appreciation for all the goodness the area has to offer, always up for exploring new neighborhoods and trying new activities, even when dealing with a huge daily struggle like professional dissatisfaction.

She’s made me re-appreciate the city, the community, and the life I have. Read below and she may do the same for you…

Getting fired eleven years ago turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to me. Hoping the same for Charlene.

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Six months ago, I took a fantastic leap of faith and moved from sunny SWFL to the North Shore of Illinois. I left a well-paying job that I was good at – but didn’t allow for much else as it just took everything from me to do it – for a new opportunity in a new field that also provided the quality of life that living just outside Chicago offered. I know, Crazy, right?!

Well maybe it was a bit crazy because that job opportunity was not what it was supposed to be. Instead of replacing the current manager, I became the gal Friday. Instead of thriving, I found a struggling, if not dying business. With an extreme micromanager and extreme clutterer/minor hoarder in denial, I at first did the best I could with what I was allowed to do. I cleaned. I organized. I went back and cleaned and organized some more. Those were the most productive and least unhappy days at the office.

I am in my mid-forties, have over 30 years of administrative experience, really do know what I am doing and get down to doing it. So what I don’t do well with are micromanagers. It’s been a miserable work experience. Some of you know I have been working on developing my photo scanning/organizing to be an actual income-producing business. This came about as a result of several experiences for me, one having been to haul over 6 boxes of photo albums across country and up three flights of stairs to my new apartment. That sucked. There had to be a better way. Additionally, my new office was littered with photos that were just left all over the place, in any place. So they were curled, faded, torn and in bad repair. This is not the way to honor those memories.

Well that idea has taken flight into full blown professional organizing and the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO) annual conference is next week in Orlando. So I am going. Because that door was opened wide for me yesterday when I got fired two days shy of my six month probation period coming due. In his true Asshat fashion, my (now former) boss primed the pump with an email sent late on Friday, which he knew would greet me first thing Monday. For no good reason I must have known this was coming and even did my laundry on Monday instead of Tuesday (one of the unofficial perks of the job, and Tuesday had been my ‘day’ for awhile now), so I am freshly dressed for the week – bonus. I will miss my co-workers, because they are my friends and wonderfully talented people. The condition of the business doesn’t and shouldn’t take anything away from them.

I am so very, VERY GRATEFUL to have had this happen now. Thanks to my (Dance Experiment) sisters and my (Fear Experiment Eight) family, I am transformed. Stronger. I would not have been able to handle this situation as confidently without Fear Experiment behind me. It helps to know that others have gone before me and survived – THRIVED! I have the FE family to lean on for support. I know they will be there for me, as I will/would be for them. I will not be tucking tail and running back to Florida – I LOVE it here in Chicago! Nor do I have time to dwell on negative feelings with myself or even directed at him….I have a business to get off the ground! I suppose there is a bit of irony in that working for one of the most unorganized business owners on the North Shore will lead me to create an NAPO affiliated business. And because I am not the idiot my former boss thought I was, I have already rallied, starting to assemble resources. I can take the time I need to get this thing going the right way.

I Love My New Life Of Yes!